ICECRD ACTIVITIES – Tourism objects are non-oil and gas foreign exchange earners which are now being developed in various regions. The tourism objects that have developed the longest are those that highlight the beauty of nature, art and culture. This tourism object has been recognized by the Government as the largest foreign exchange earner from the non-oil and gas sector.
Considering the natural beauty is a strong attraction for tourists, this potential is interesting to work on. Indonesia as an agricultural country has a very wide agricultural land. A series of agricultural activities from cultivation to post-harvest can be used as a special attraction for tourism activities. By combining agronomic activities with tourism, many large plantations in Indonesia have been developed into agro tourism objects.
Such is the importance of Agrotourism, that on November 23, 2020, the Faculty of Agriculture, Sebelas Maret University (UNS) held a National Webinar with the theme “Empowerment and Development of Tourism Villages in Indonesia: Agrotourism and Creative Economy in Rural Areas”. The webinar was attended by the UNS Academic Community, Students and Alumni of Faperta UNS and the Scope Work Unit of the Ministry of Agriculture.
Appearing as a speaker at the Webinar, the Head of the Center for Plantation Research and Development, Ir. Syafaruddin, Ph.D. , Member of the Advisory Board of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Irfan Asy’ari Sudirman W., Lecturer of Faculty of Agriculture, UNS, Dr. Agung Wibowo, SP., M.Sc., and UNS Faculty of Economics and Business Lecturer Dr. Intan Novela. The presentations of the four resource persons became very important with various reviews of technological aspects, economic aspects, aspects of student roles and agro-tourism management, said the Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture, Prof. Dr. Samanhudi when giving a speech.
In line with what the Dean of Faperta said, at the opening of the Vice Chancellor III for Student Affairs and Alumni, Prof. Dr. Kuncoro Diharjo, ST, MT emphasized the importance of professional agro-tourism management by prioritizing environmental sustainability and sustainability while empowering the economic potential of rural communities. Not only that, Kuncoro hopes that the role of students and alumni will be very important in an effort to encourage and contribute to both technical and non-technical thinking, so that in the future Agrotourism becomes the main choice of tourism both domestically and abroad with a myriad of attractions, said Kuncoro. .
The Head of the Plantation Research and Development Center, got the first opportunity to explain “Development of the Agro Edu Tourism Area”. Kapus enthusiastically welcomed the implementation of the National Webinar with the theme of improving the welfare of the community, especially rural areas through the development of agro-tourism. This is in line with the Ministry of Agriculture’s targets through policies and programs: increasing national food productivity, facilitating food distribution, facilitating transportation access, maintaining price stability and developing buffer stocks and market intervention (market operations).
Furthermore, Syafaruddin emphasized that agricultural commodity development areas must have high economic value, have adequate economies of scale, are thematic in nature, and through an agricultural innovation approach that functions as a place for training, apprenticeships, business partnerships, centers for dissemination and business advocacy to the wider community, as well as become a safe, visitor-friendly and environmentally friendly tourist area for domestic and foreign tourists.
At the end of his presentation, Syafaruddin proposed the location of Agro Edu Wisata (AEW) to be developed through future cooperation owned by the commodity-based and non-commodity-based Ministry of Agriculture from the Food Security Agency, the Directorate General of Plantations, the Directorate General of Horticulture, the Directorate General of Livestock and Animal Health, the Directorate General of Infrastructure and Agricultural Facilities, Directorate General of Pagan Crops, Agricultural Research and Development Agency, and Agricultural HR Agency spread throughout Indonesia which are divided into 2 candidate priority locations 1 and 2 with a total of 137 locations reflecting superior commodities, except for the Directorate General of Agricultural Infrastructure and Facilities supporting all activities AEW.
The Center for Plantation Research and Development is ready to play an active role and participate in encouraging AEW development efforts by maximizing the available resources and the participation of technical personnel and researchers. This is in line with the scope of the collaboration that was signed between the Plantation Research and Development Center and Faperta UNS some time ago, Syafaruddin added. (Anjas)